what to do if stopped in ohio for dui
As the legal processes can be complex and intimidating, being stopped in Ohio for DUI can be frightening. Knowing what to expect and how to react can make a big difference in the end result. If pulled over in Ohio, follow these steps:
Step One: Pull your vehicle safely and calmly to the side of the road. While gently pulling your car to the side of the road, be sure to signal right for a right turn or left for a left turn to make your intentions clear to the officer.
Step Two: Follow instructions from the officer. Once the officer has stopped behind you, roll down your windows and turn off the ignition. If it is dark outside, turn on your interior lights. Be courteous and polite to the officer. Provide your license and registration when asked.
Step Three: Notify the officer if you’ve been drinking. Be truthful if asked, but do not volunteer any other information. Cooperate with field sobriety tests, but politely decline the breathalyzer test.
Step Four: Be aware of your rights. The officer may arrest you if they believe you are driving under the influence, but you do have certain rights. Be aware of any Miranda warnings needed, and be certain not to sign any statements outside of presence of your lawyer.
Step Five: Come prepared with an attorney’s contact information. Having a knowledgeable DUI attorney in mind to call can make a big difference. Look for a lawyer with extensive experience, a good reputation, and familiarity with the local court system.
Step Six: Understand the penalties. Even a first offense can result in jail time, fines, court costs, and potentially suspension of your license. The penalties become stiffer with subsequent offenses.
Step Seven: Obtain treatment if necessary. Following the arrest, you may find yourself needing help with any alcohol use issues. Treatment programs can help you gain control of any drinking problems, as well as providing advice about job loss, court proceedings, finances, and relationships.
The second, expanded set of topics include the consequences following a DUI, positive actions to take after a DUI, where to access help, maintaining personal accountability, and how to regain trust after a DUI.
Consequences following a DUI include criminal fines, drivers license suspension, increased automobile insurance premiums, and potentially more serious charges such as aggravated vehicular assault. It is important that you comply with all court-related matters, such as explaining the incident to the judge, paying all fees associated, and attending court-mandated classes. Your attorney can help you navigate the complicated legal system.
Taking positive actions can help turn a negative situation into a positive one. Maintaining sobriety is the first important step in the process. If possible, meeting with a professional as well as attending Alcoholics Anonymous or Al-Anon meetings can be extremely helpful. Seeking or continuing education or work experience can help in the healing process as well.
Where to access help is an important step in the recovery process. Local health departments, community centers, and internet searches can provide contacts for support groups to help in the recovery process. Your attorney can also provide contacts for support services such as alcohol abuse counselors, social workers, or substance abuse counselors.
Maintaining personal accountability is an important factor in the recovery process. Avoiding enabling behavior and staying in tune with your emotions can help you process the after-effects of the DUI situation. Be honest with yourself and others and express what you are going through.
Lastly, how to regain trust after a DUI can be difficult. Taking responsibility for the incident by setting boundaries and making better choices is a first step towards achieving this. Making amends and apologizing to those you have hurt can help to heal and protect relationships. It can also help to ask forgiveness and offer to repair any of the damage that might be done. Be mindful that trust is earned, and more time may be needed.